The Guardian Sustainable Business Awards for 2013 have been launched. Nominations are invited from all UK businesses who can demonstrate an innovative approach to addressing sustainability issues and are at the forefront of instigating change in their sector.
Now in its third year, these are the only national newspaper awards that focus on recognising the innovation and impact in communicating sustainability, engaging with employees to make sustainability relevant for them and the wider society. The awards also champion an organisation’s commitment to the fundamental issues relating to sustainability - the environment, energy, recycling and the industrial supply chain - and, for the first time this year, they recognise the achievements of consultants.
John Sauven, executive director, Greenpeace, said: “Running a business that doesn’t harm wildlife, injure or maim people and can still make a profit shouldn’t be that difficult. But it does require businesses to look at more than short-term profit and loss accounts.
gWinners of the Guardian Sustainable Business Awards are challenging and changing the business model in the light of climate change and wider environmental stress. And recognition of their success is key.
“These awards are an important way of showing that even when the going gets tough, there are businesses out there that don’t abandon their values.”
Jo Confino, executive editor at the Guardian and chair of the Guardian Sustainable Business, said: "The Guardian Sustainable Business Awards are a fantastic opportunity for businesses - big or small - to show how they are transitioning to more sustainable models. For the 2013 awards, we want to see entries from organisations that demonstrate innovation and impact, going beyond what is standard practice to showing the way business of the future should be done."
Past winners of the awards have included leisurewear brand Puma who last year won the biodiversity category and the overall prize for their Environmental Profit & Loss Account initiative. The Co-operative Group won the communicating sustainability category for their Join The Revolution campaign and sustainable carpet tile manufacturer Interface for their Go Beyond project.
All winners and shortlisted entries will be published on the Guardian Sustainable Business network in the Best Practice Exchange as a resource of leading practice in business sustainability. They will also be collated in the Guardian Sustainable Business ebook – Inspiring Progress in Sustainable Business - which will be a collection of cutting edge initiatives from leaders in corporate sustainability. The ebook is available to members of the network as well as all entrants of the awards.
The categories for 2013 awards are:
Communicating sustainability (sponsored by Getty Images)
This is an award for consumer facing businesses. Highlighting cross-platform campaigns that have made an impact, campaigns that have taken sustainability to the masses, secured strong response and made a big difference.
This award is for projects that seek to embed sustainable thinking into company culture and recognises initiatives that have demonstrably enabled the people who don't have 'sustainability' in their job title to buy-in and act.
This award will go to a business that delivers products and services in ways that take full account of their responsibility to the communities they touch.
Fostering health, happiness and a positive working environment is part of being a responsible business. This award will go to an organisation that goes beyond standard benefits to support employees and ensure their health and happiness.
In the long-term there is a clear link between protecting biodiversity and business success. This award is for business initiatives that take the long view on ecosystem services.
This award is for initiatives that seek to embed a respect for human, economic and environmental rights across a business or product's supply chain.
Reducing carbon intensity is vital and this award is for corporate initiatives that take a holistic approach to measuring, managing and reducing scope 1, 2 and 3 emissions.
This award will got to a project that breaks down traditional barriers and sees several partners working together towards a goal that delivers truly sustainable outcomes.
Waste and recycling
Shifting how business thinks about waste is vital. This award is for projects or products that are at the leading-edge of approaches to waste.
An award for pioneering projects that demonstrate a dedicated approach to water stewardship and holistic management of corporate water risk.
Projects that lead the way in corporate energy management, going beyond standard practice to radically reduce consumption and stimulate energy independence.
Built environment (sponsored by AECOM)
This award is for innovative projects that adopt a sensitive approach to the impact buildings have on people and the environment.
Consultancy of the year
Judges will reward a consultancy that has delivered multiple outstanding projects that have enabled clients to drive innovation and impact in their sustainability initiatives.
Sustainable business leader of the year (sponsored by URS)
An award voted for by Guardian Sustainable Business readers to reward a business leader who has shown dedication and bravery in progressing the sustainable business agenda, both within their own organisation and in the sector as a whole.
The deadline for entries is Friday 8 February 2013. To enter the Guardian Sustainable Business Awards visit: guardian.co.uk/gsbawards
The Guardian Sustainable Business Network is a community-focused site, that brings together leading-edge comment, analysis and insight on the role business plays in society. It collates expert opinion, features blogs from leading sustainability experts and showcases best practice in corporate sustainability.
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